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Delaware Abortion Laws


Abortion is legal in Delaware through viability. Thereafter, abortion is legal only if the life of the mother is at risk or the fetus is not compatible with life outside the womb without extraordinary efforts.


Abortion is regulated in every U.S. state, which often includes the licensing requirements of providers, restrictions on late-term abortion, and parental consent mandates. Delaware abortion laws are somewhat restrictive, requiring a 24-hour waiting period following written consent and full explanation of procedure, and the requirement that abortion providers be licensed medical doctors.

In Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization, the U.S. Supreme Court overruled Roe v. Wade, the case that had recognized a federal constitutional right to abortion. Dobbs returned abortion regulation back to the states.

The following chart lists the main provisions of Delaware's abortion laws. See FindLaw's Reproductive Rights section to learn more.


Tit. 24 §§ 1702(18); 1790(a)-(b); 1783

Legal Abortion

  • Before viability
  • After viability if physician certifies (a) abortion is necessary to protect the life or health of the mother; or (b) fetal abnormality

Illegal Abortion

  • Generally, after viability


  • Point in pregnancy at which physician determines in good faith that the fetus can survive outside the uterus without extraordinary medical measures

Notification for minors

  • 24-hour notice to one parent, grandparent, licensed medical health professional, or legal guardian (unless waived by a court)

Residency Requirement


Delaware Abortion Laws: Related Resources

Abortion is generally regulated by a mixture of health care laws and criminal laws. Because of the overlap of these legal areas, it may be wise to speak with a qualified attorney. There are many attorneys throughout Delaware with health care law experience who may be able to help you. As well, you may wish to speak with a qualified criminal defense attorney in your area, for the criminal law issues related to abortion.

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